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Scotch Corner
Middleton Tyas, North Yorkshire
Coordinates54°26′33″N 1°40′08″W / 54.4426°N 1.6690°W / 54.4426; -1.6690
Roads at
TypeRoundabout interchange
Maintained byNational Highways
Scotch Corner is located in North Yorkshire
Scotch Corner
Scotch Corner
Location in North Yorkshire
Scotch Corner is located in UK motorways
Scotch Corner
Scotch Corner
Location in UK motorway network

Scotch Corner is a junction of the A1(M) and A66 trunk roads near Richmond in North Yorkshire, England. It has been described as "the modern gateway to Cumbria, the North East and Scotland",[1] and is a primary destination signed from as far away as the M6 motorway, 50 miles (80 kilometres) away. The junction's name is derived from the fact that it is the point of divergence for traffic coming from London, the East Midlands and Yorkshire wishing to continue either to Edinburgh and eastern Scotland (along the A1(M)) or to Glasgow and western Scotland (by taking the A66).


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The A1(M) leads north towards North East England and Scotland, and south towards London. The A66 leads north-west towards Penrith and the M6 motorway. There are also three other exits from the junction: the A6055 road north and south, with the southbound side leading to the A6108 towards the Yorkshire Dales and Richmond. The third exit is towards Middleton Tyas and Croft-on-Tees and is a minor road which also provides access to the services.

Etymology and history

The Scotch Corner Hotel

The name originated from being the junction where the north–south Roman road known as "Dere Street", which crossed the River Tees at Piercebridge, met the Roman road which went west through Bowes and Brough.[2] It is where travellers to eastern Scotland (now via A1(M) and/or A68) are separated from travellers to western Scotland (now via A66 and M6/ A74(M)/M74).

The Romans were responsible for building the first roads to meet at this point and the site of the original junction is just a few hundred yards away from the modern day intersection.[3] In AD 71 the Romans took control of the area when they defeated the Brigantes, a Celtic tribe at the Battle of Scotch Corner (1st century).[1] There was a major Roman settlement at Scotch Corner, with its own mint.[2][4]

It is a landmark for planning and describing routes. For example, it is around 50 miles (80 km) from Leeds, providing a useful distance for cycling events.[5] It was used by cyclists for navigation.[6] It was in a fox hunting district, providing a means of identifying the location when reporting events.[7]

The £8 million Scotch Corner diversion opened in July 1971, which created a grade separated junction on the A1.[8][9] Later, a £380 million upgrade of the A1 between Leeming Bar and Barton Interchange meant that the road was upgraded to three-lane motorway standard in March 2018.[10] This created the opportunity for further archaeological investigation.[11][12]


The front entrance of Moto Hospitality, Scotch Corner

The Three Tuns coaching inn stood at Scotch Corner from the 1820s.[13][14] The inn subsequently became a roadhouse in the early days of motorised travel.[2] It was demolished in 1939 when the road was widened.[2] The Scotch Corner Hotel was established there in 1939, built on the site of a mid-16th century inn and now operated by Holiday Inn.[2][15] Almost as soon as it was opened, part of the hotel was requisitioned by the Royal Air Force for convalescing airmen.[9] In 2011 it underwent a £3 million refurbishment.[16][17]

A Moto Hospitality service station, built in 1980, has an attached Travelodge motel.[15][18]

In popular culture

Jethro Tull refer to Scotch Corner in the title track of their 1976 Too Old to Rock 'n' Roll: Too Young to Die! album.

See also


  1. ^ a b "Richmond and Swaledale History". Archived from the original on 1 March 2012. Retrieved 8 March 2012.((cite web)): CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
  2. ^ a b c d e Lloyd, Chris (12 March 2018). "History of Scotch Corner - once the site of a battle between Romans and Brigantes, 2,000 years ago". The Northern Echo. Archived from the original on 13 March 2018.
  3. ^ Tomlin, Roger Simon Ovin (2018). "10: Government and administrators". Britannia Romana: Roman inscriptions and Roman Britain. Oxford: Oxbow Books. p. 268. ISBN 978-1-78570-700-1.
  4. ^ "Roman treasures found on A1". Highways England, Government of the United Kingdom. 10 April 2017. Archived from the original on 24 April 2017.
  5. ^ "There have been recently some remarkable bicycling feats by ladies". Hearth and Home: An Illustrated Weekly Journal for Gentlewomen. Vol. 27, no. 441. 26 October 1899. p. 14. There have been recently some remarkable bicycling feats by ladies, and not the least remarkable is the feat of Mrs. W. Hargrave, of Leeds, who has established a world's record for a lady rider over an out and home course of a 100 miles in 6 hours 37 min. This Yorkshire lady rode the usual course-from the Post-office in Roundhay Road, Leeds, to Scotch corner and back
  6. ^ "Routes and replies: London to nearest point in Scotland". Cycling: An Illustrated Weekly. Vol. 18, no. 454. 30 September 1899. p. 20. The old Glasgow coach road, i.e., Great North Road up to Scotch Corner, then by Bowes, over Stainmore, to Brough, and on by Appleby, Penrith, and Carlisle, to Gretna
  7. ^ "The Earl of Zetland's". Horse and Hound. Vol. 5, no. 242. 10 November 1888. The first draw was Ledbury Park, where a fox soon was on foot, who took the field at a great pace by Scotch Corner and Gatherley Moor
  8. ^ Scotch Corner interchange Commercial Motor 9 July 1971 page 26
  9. ^ a b Lloyd, Chris (16 March 2018). "Life and Times of Scotch Corner Take a New Turn". Darlington & Stockton Times. No. 11–2018. p. 33. ISSN 2516-5348.
  10. ^ Copeland, Alexa (29 March 2018). "A1(M) in North Yorkshire now fully open - But works not over just yet". The Northern Echo. Retrieved 30 March 2018.
  11. ^ Fell, David W. (2020). "Contact, Concord and Conquest: Britons and Romans at Scotch Corner Digital Monograph". NAA Monograph Series. 5. York: Northern Archaeological Associates. doi:10.5284/1078330.
  12. ^ Fell, D. W.; Johnson, P. G. (2021). The Evolution of Dere Street from Routeway to Motorway: Evidence from the Dishforth to Barton A1 Motorway Improvements. Northern Archaeological Associates. doi:10.5284/1086871.
  13. ^ Hodgson, Barbara (24 June 2019). "Beamish Museum's 1950s Town - here is what's happening next at the County Durham attraction". Evening Chronicle.
  14. ^ Silk, Steve (2021). The Great North Road: London to Edinburgh. Summersdale. p. 234. ISBN 978-1800070493.
  15. ^ a b "Domesday Reloaded: Scotch Corner Hotel". BBC. Archived from the original on 15 March 2012. Retrieved 8 March 2012.
  16. ^ Amos, Mike (31 January 2012). "Third degree burns". The Northern Echo. Archived from the original on 23 March 2014.
  17. ^ "Holiday Inn, Scotch Corner". Projekt Architects. Archived from the original on 13 March 2018.
  18. ^ "Domesday Reloaded: Highway Service Station". BBC. Archived from the original on 18 March 2012. Retrieved 8 March 2012.